UCL Innovation and Enterprise



4 April 2014

Invaluable support, unbeatable experience

UCL Advances is UCL’s centre for entrepreneurship and business interaction. In the past year it has secured around 100 internships for students to gain invaluable work experience with SMEs across London.

Business Success Choice

However, the UCL Advances Student Internship Programme is a scheme with a difference – it pays students a tax-free training allowance of £250 per week for a full-time, eight-week placement. The programme helps young people take their first step on the job ladder while removing the financial burden of unpaid work experience.

Another advantage of the UCL Advances approach

UCL Advances also runs a summer programme of free key skills workshops for young entrepreneurs. These provide support and learning for students of every level of experience and knowledge, from introductory and intermediate to advanced. Many of UCL Advances internees will have benefited from these workshops.

One UCL student to have taken advantage of the internship scheme is Daniele Santoro (BA Italian and Business Management 2013), who worked with Accelerator, an innovation centre in Shoreditch, London. Accelerator is a business incubator, particularly for technology start-ups. It is home to a number of small operations and focused training programmes.

Some of Accelerator’s companies have already worked with UCL Advances on the university’s business support schemes, including programmes for training and mentoring students.

A wide ranging world wide web remit

Working directly with Richard Celm, manager of Accelerator and other members of staff there, Daniele undertook a variety of projects during his three month internship. The most important of these was re-branding and redesigning the company’s website, including developing strategies for social media, SEO and content.

When describing his role with Accelerator in more detail, Daniele explained, “There was a lack of strategy and direction which I helped to address, bringing a fresh perspective. Hopefully everything is in place now for Accelerator to turn a greater profit and establish itself as an industry leader.”

As Richard says, “Dan’s summer internship was extremely useful for him and us. I would certainly recommend any small business to get involved in this programme next year.”

“My time at Accelerator has proved vital in helping me to secure a job I wouldn’t have been able to otherwise get without this opportunity from UCL Advances”. Daniele Santoro, UCL student